Thursday, August 21, 2014

shop preview: 1920s ingenue, 1940s enchantress, 1960s provocateur

Which of those three are you?  A dress for each type is coming to the shop this week, along with several other lovelies. The first two items shown here are already in the shop (and linked), and the rest will follow shortly.

1920s cream silk crepe and lace Fiesole dress with satin sash (in the shop!).

1940s Forget Me Not embroidered rose pink crepe bed jacket (in the shop!).

1950s Bramble Cottage floral print shirtwaist dress.

1960s ditsy floral print blouse with pintucks by Jane Hunter.

1940s black crepe gown with black sequin and gold braid trim.

1950s black plaid cotton full skirt.

1960s pink and cream floral lace top and skirt set.

1960s mod white waffle piqué dress with cut-out midriff by Saba Jrs California.

1950s gingham dress with wide embroidered waistband and puff sleeves.

Antique white eyelet lace petticoat skirt.

1960s sky blue bouclé dress by Jonathan Logan.


Tuesday, August 19, 2014

house of charm and distinction

We found these two beautifully illustrated pieces of 1940s sales/marketing for a Grand Rapids clothing company with the fabulous name The House of Charm and Distinction.  They're big--30 3/4" x 22"--and have sales copy for each dress, the sizes and colors available, the type of fabric, pricing, and an area where it appears samples of the color (fabric?) would have been placed.  Each dress is shown in full color against a muted black-and-white background, and each also has a simple line illustration showing a back view of the dress.

There are several references to the war in these pieces, so I'd guess they were produced sometime between 1942 and 1944.

The first poster shows dresses in junior sizes, and the second a mix of juniors' and women's sizes.  You can click the pictures to see them bigger.

The blue dress' skirt has "a wide tuck smack down the center."  Also: "A dress like this is impervious to time and wear; never a day goes by that you won't want to wear it and it carries a most modest price tag."

How cute is the folk dress style jumper on the left?  It is "Tailored as carefully as your kid brother's sportcoat" and is "the prettiest jumper in the world, interestingly priced," which apparently means expensive, since it's the highest priced item on either poster with a $15.95 ceiling price, $7.00-$10.00 more than most of the other dresses.  You'll also notice that this young lady is throwing up the V for Victory symbol (there's a V for Victory pennant and photo of a soldier in the background illustration).

The pink rayon jersey dress on the left also comes in "Airman Blue"--and with "real pockets"!  The cute cotton print on the right: "No more sloppy dressing for the cute little figures.  Today it's snap and contrast for tricking the eye.  Easy-to-wear and easy-to-care-for clothes, priced with young incomes in mind."

The dress on the left is definitely being sold to a patriotic and thrift-minded young lady:  "Clean Cut Classic Ready to Turn In A Gallant Performance on Duty!  No nonsense now--quality casuals are today's darlings.  Each dress must serve many purposes and serve them prettily."

The black rayon crepe on the right has the "festive touch" of a removable yellow flower on the belt.

I love both of these dresses.  The one on the left "has that something that makes gracious allowances if your figure isn't exactly your fortune."  The floral dress has a scalloped button placket.

A couple of cute suits.  "If you are wise you'll have a two-piecer in your wardrobe.  They're chic, versatile, and a great formula for money-stretching."  The suit on the right is priced $7.00 higher than the one on the left.  It's made from shantung and crepe (the left suit is made of spun rayon) and is "a real fashion refreshment in a much uniformed world. . . It's fun, testing your ingenuity in assembling these separates to stretch your war-time wardrobe."  I like the choice of hat, which does indeed make it looks like she's wearing a uniform.

Here's a contrast: an elegant sheer black rayon dress and a girlish cotton dress with ruffled bodice.

"Dame Fashion Finds the Way to Make More of Less Without Sacrifice to Charm. . . That is true because American designers have determined to keep our women looking attractive."  The righthand illustration appears to be a woman of color, which I'm assuming was a rarity at that time.

I wish I knew something about this company.  Grand Rapids was known as a hub of furniture production, not of garment manufacturing.  I haven't found anything on the internet other than an obituary from a woman who used to work at C&D.  Hopefully I'll be able to find something more about them from the library or historical society.


Friday, August 15, 2014

shop accessories preview: clogs, Keds and berets

A little shop accessories preview with just shoes and hats!  All items arriving in the shop starting today.

1970s Dr. Scholl's leather and wood clog sandals.

1970s brown leather Etienne Aigner heels.

1970s white Keds Knockarounds.

Deadstock 1970s blue Keds Champions with box.

1960s men's black and white wingtip brogues by Nunn Bush.

A trio of vintage Vrai Basque wool berets.

1960s beaded black satin hat with bow by Roberta Bernay.


Thursday, August 14, 2014

shop preview: pink embroidery, pastel lace and a princess dress

This shop preview is kind of heavy on the ladylike stuff--pink, tulle, lace, flowers.  But for the rest of you, there is also a smattering of bright color, abstract prints, and tribal embroidery.  All items begin arriving in the shop today!

1950s Heirloom Rose embroidered pink polished cotton dress by Parnes Feinstein.

1970s mailbox and golf ball print skort skirt by Vested Gentress.

1970s floral print rayon dress with amazing neckline by Rashann.

1950s pink and white tulle and taffeta party dress by Cotillion Formals.

1950s white cotton broadcloth blouse with bow at neck.

1960s floral beaded linen dress by Joe Daniels.

1960s orange and gold Bali print dress by Joan Curtis.

1950s white and pastel clover and floral lace dress with bow belt.

1960s embroidered tribal tunic or jacket.

1950s pink floral print cotton dress, Lee Wentley by Wentworth.

1960s Secret Society print blouse.


Wednesday, August 13, 2014

street style: summer girls, noir dames and spies, and lots of coats

I haven't done a street style post since January (!), so this one's pretty big.  There are some cute summer looks here, but there were so many coats in my favorites that they make up half of this round-up. But the good news is there's something here for everyone, no matter what hemisphere you're in!

summer girls
*Cute nautical stripes and baggy-ish shorts in Genoa. | The Sartorialist
*Folkloric flower pockets! In London. | The Locals
*I just want to step inside this photo and live in it.  Love the pattern mixing.  At the Rimini Grand Hotel. | The Sartorialist 

spies and noir dames
*I love black, and this lady in Helsinki is wearing it all so well. | Hel-Looks
*She may have a camouflage bag and be sporting shades, but I would totally notice this woman and her perfect cycling ensemble.  In Milan. | The Sartorialist
*Proof that you don't have to be in head-to-toe black to look dangerous.  Love the shades, the silver bag, and the lacy skirt--all of it, really!  China Fashion Week. | WGSN Street

slightly wacky winter
*Another pair of sunglasses I'm coveting, and I also love the furry cuffs on this gingham coat.  Paris. | The Sartorialist
*Loving the striped dress, fantastic cranberry coat, and big black handbag. | WGSN Street
*Only in Helsinki!  You really can't be bummed out about winter if you're wearing a furry lavender hat, pink scarf and platform creepers, and carrying such a fun bag.  And it really looks great on her. | Hel-Looks

somewhat more sedate winter
*I feel like this would have been a winter uniform for me if I still lived in NYC.  Love the layering of that fantastic cropped plaid jacket over a longer shirt, and the platforms with the rolled up jeans. Paris. | Street Style Aesthetic
*Furry gray coat + furry mustard scarf + giant black bag = yes, please.  Milan. | The Sartorialist
*This big tapestry coat thingy looks like it was stripped from an old couch.  And I love it.  Paris. | Street Style Aesthetic

Are you enjoying the weather where you are?  Which of these outfits do you most want to be wearing?  I'm at that stage right now where I'm not quite ready for summer to end, though I'm--as always--looking forward to the arrival of autumn (my favorite!).  So part of me wants to be wearing that chic striped shirt and shorts look, and another part wants to cuddle up in that furry gray coat and mustard scarf.


Thursday, August 7, 2014

shop preview: pink roses, deadstock blouses, floral print chiffon, and a 1950s swimsuit

Bright floral prints, deadstock blouses and shorts, and a fantastic 1950s swimsuit are all in this week's shop preview!  All items arriving in the shop starting today.

1950s Pink Rose print voile dress by L'Aiglon.

1950s leaf embroidered Rose Marie Reid swimsuit.

1950s rose print chiffon party dress.

Deadstock 1960s red floral print cotton blouse.

1940s lace-trimmed yellow cotton pinafore dress.

Deadstock red plaid seersucker shorts by Koret of California.

1960s floral print circle skirt square dancing dress by H Bar C.

Deadstock 1960s pink and yellow floral print blouse.

1950s black floral print dress by Pat Perkins.

1950s men's chainstitched Baxter's Tavern gabardine Rathnaw Bowl-n-Golf Shirt by Yale.

1950s yellow linen sheath dress with bow at the neck by Helen Whiting.



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